Which have trained for longer?
Which are at more day-to-day risk?
Which get paid more?
In the pay equity debates we tend to focus on the argument about the effect and value of child raising, perhaps because it’s a handy dead end. In fact, however, the gender pay gap exists between whole professions: why are police officers paid so much more than nurses? There are plenty of other examples of pairs of equally trained equally skilled professions where female dominated one is paid significantly less than the male dominated one.
There’s a straight forward gender pay equity issue, but also questions of how we value women (why is the kinds of things women do worth less than the things men do?). By extension there is a question about why we value professions which care for people lower than professions that care for things, as that tends to be the gender split in professions as well.
But to come back to original question, is it right that we pay nurses significantly less than police officers and, if so, why?
[For a broader discussion of pay equity, try Julie’s Pay Equity Hub at The Hand Mirror or Queen of Thorns who’s hosting the Down Under Feminists’ Carnival]